Black Panther II is supposedly on track to arrive next year, but even Daniel Kaluuya, who starred in the first film, has no idea whether he’s in it. In an interview on Jemele Hill’s Spotify podcast Jemele Hill is Unbothered, Kaluuya reflected on the loss of his co-star Chadwick Boseman, and gave an update regarding what he knows about the sequel.
When the topic of Black Panther 2 came up at the 24:20 part of the podcast, Kaluuya suggested that all he knows about the sequel is that it’s coming eventually. “I have no idea,” he said on whether he’ll reprise his role as W’Kabi. “Whatever the story needs. That was a moment for us. I don’t wanna like, ‘Oh yo I’m tryna be in it, just ‘cause I wanna.’ It’s for us, I’m a fan. If the story and the piece is better without me, I’m like yo, I’m gonna watch this ‘cause I really wanna watch it. If I’m in it and I’m able to serve it, I’m in it. I just stay in that position.”
Marvel Studios head Kevin Fiege said the role of Boseman’s T’Challa, the titular Black Panther at the heart of the film, will not be recast in the sequel. Reflecting on his late co-star, Kaluuya echoed sentiments that the sequel just won’t be the same without him. “It’s gonna be a huge loss, he was the center he was the glue,” he said at the 27:20 point of the interview.
“That’s gonna be felt, you know? When I’ve spoken to people [a] part of the cast, and the energy and the character of everyone… Everyone is ready to honor what he gave,” he continued. “We can’t even put our head around what he gave in that moment, to us and to everyone. … The loss is unquantifiable.”
Boseman died at the age of 43 following a years-long battle with cancer in August. In the days following his death, many expressed shock and said they had no idea he had been fighting cancer. The sequel to Black Panther was initially announced prior to Boseman’s death, and Disney confirmed in December that the sequel will honor Boseman’s legacy and will instead “explore the world of Wakanda and the rich characters introduced in the first film.”
Listen to the full episode of the podcast above.